I have a ‘98 Rexhall Aerbus Ford 460 7.5. Replaced starter, selonoids, fuel pump, filter, fuel pressure regulator, and battery. Still won’t start. Turns over but no fire. The tank isn’t back in place because I wanted to see if it would start first. All wires, fuel lines are hooked up properly. There was fuel in the fuel pressure regulator when I removed it. Checked relays and fuses and are good. Should it start although tank is not reattached? I’m at a loss of what to try next. I’ll check Schrader valve today. Then, I’ll replace spark plugs, rotor, and distributor cap also. Is there anything else that it might be that I need to try? Any recommendations and help is highly appreciated. I also have a new battery. Since the fuel pump is in the back, I can’t hear if it hums for a few secs. I’m doing this alone an no one to assist physically. That’s a different story. It will start with a shot of starter fluid.

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    Welcome to Motor Vehicle Maintenance & Repair! If it will start with a shot of starter fluid, that's a pretty good sign it is fuel related. Your pump may not be running as you'd like. You should be able to jump it directly with a 12vdc power source directly at the pump if you want to see if it's running correctly. Next step after that is to see if there is fuel pressure at the rail. If you have pressure there, you need to see if the injectors are firing. Fuel in the regulator doesn't mean you have the right fuel pressure. Commented May 13, 2018 at 21:00
  • You say it starts with starter fluid, but not without, and you don't have the fuel tank attached... At risk of sounding daft, dues it just need fuel?
    – Rory Alsop
    Commented May 13, 2018 at 21:08

1 Answer 1


It does sound like a fuel problem since it will start on ether.

On my 1987 Mallard RV with a 460, I can lean out the drivers door and turn the key to the On position and I will hear the tank pump run.

You may be able to borrow or rent a fuel pressure gauge kit from one of the auto part stores, which will attach to the Schrader valve and show you if you have any pressure. You can place the gauge on the windshield and crank the engine. This is the kit I have:


If it will fire on ether, first two guesses are the fuel rail does not have pressure (Schrader valve) or the injectors are not firing. You can use a NOID light kit to check to see if the injectors are firing. Again, you may be able to borrow or rent one from an auto parts store. This is the kit I bought off of Amazon to isolate an injector problem on a 1987 Ford E-150:


The most common reasons I have had with Ford's not getting fuel is a bad tank fuel pump or the collision fuel cut off switch getting tripped. I have had multiple vehicles where the tank fuel pump has failed after sitting. I blame the Ethanol they put in fuel, since it attracts water. It is hygroscopic, meaning it will absorb moisture from the air. Then the fuel pump will rust.

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